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Disk wiping and DiskPatch

Summary:
This page was created to give you a brief overview of a specific DiskPatch feature.
Before continuing with a procedure please make sure you consult the manual.
Disk Wipe
DiskPatch can be used to securely wipe partitions, entire disks or specific areas on a hard disk by writing a byte pattern to each sector on the disk or the selected area.
Wiping a disk can be useful for:
 

Disk sanitation before a disk is made available to other parties. For example, before selling your disk, wipe it first! This way you can be sure others do not have access to your data even if they use data recovery or low level disk access tools.

Note: There are many Windows 'erasure' type tools available that promise secure deletion of deleted files and/or temporary files. Do not rely on this type of tool to make *all* data unrecoverable. The only way to ensure all data is safely deleted is by wiping the entire disk.

 

Preparing the disk to receive the contents of another disk. This is especially useful when performing a forensic clone to a larger disk. If you're cloning from a smaller to a larger disk (this will often be the case), always wipe the destination disk before creating the clone. This will make sure the destination disk does not contain leftover data that might contaminate the results for the subsequent forensic operation or recovery activities.

 

Virus removal from individual partitions or the entire disk. Sometimes (boot sector) viruses are difficult to get rid of. Low level virus code may also be in areas of your hard disk that are not allocated to any partition at all! If the virus is contained in one specific partition, wipe this partition only.

 

Replacing a vendor specific Low Level Format program. On modern hard disks a 'true' low level format is not possible. Still, some vendor specific tools offer a 'low level format' option to cure possible drive defects. In reality this low level format is nothing more then writing a byte pattern to all sectors on the disk, essentially the same operation as a disk wipe. DiskPatch can be used on any brand disk, while vendor specific tools are often slaved to one brand only. Also, DiskPatch allows you to perform the disk wipe / low level format either for the entire disk, or for a selected partition or region.

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